Topic: Architecture / Chicago
The Spertus Institute of Jewish Studies is expanding their facilities to what was an adjacent, empty, mid-block site. Krueck & Sexton Architects designed the new building with a prominent faceted glass frontage. The design is in the contemporary "funky-form" vein (led by people like Daniel Liebeskind and Zaha Hadid), in that it makes use of engineering to create a sculptural form, but there is no architectonic expression in the design. That is, it's not about how it's structure works, but the end result of that structure. Last weekend I walked by and took these shots of the facade being installed. You can see the complicated folded form is put together with a rather simple steel frame extending from the irregular outer edges of the floor slabs.
I think the overall effect will make a nice addition to this part of Michigan Avenue. With a narrow mid-block site, it's really only the facade that you have to make an architectural statement, and I think this exploits that notion successfully. According to the Spertus Institute, the forms are reminiscent in proportion and orientation to the windows found along the avenue. And there will be a Kosher Deli! Hell yeah, pickles and pastrami.
Spertus: New Building